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WPI 71.04 Persons or Vehicles at Work on Road

6 WAPRAC WPI 71.04Washington Practice Series TMWashington Pattern Jury Instructions--Civil

6 Wash. Prac., Wash. Pattern Jury Instr. Civ. WPI 71.04 (7th ed.)
Washington Practice Series TM
Washington Pattern Jury Instructions--Civil
April 2022 Update
Washington State Supreme Court Committee on Jury Instructions
Part VIII. Motor Vehicles
Chapter 71. Emergency and Roadwork Vehicles
WPI 71.04 Persons or Vehicles at Work on Road
A statute provides that:
(Quote or paraphrase the applicable statute or statutes.)
This statute does not apply to the [plaintiff] [defendant] if [he] [she] was [operating a motor vehicle or other equipment while] engaged in work within the right-of-way of any highway at the time of the occurrence [unless [he] [she] was traveling to and from such work].
Use this instruction if there is a jury question whether a violation of other statutes is avoided by the exceptions contained in RCW 46.61.030. Whether RCW 46.61.030 applies may be a matter of law. If the statute applies as a matter of law, this instruction is not needed.
Use WPI 60.03 (Violation of Statute, Ordinance, Administrative Rule, or Internal Governmental Policy—Evidence of Negligence) with this instruction.
Use bracketed material as applicable. Insert the statute or statutes claimed not to apply in the space provided in this instruction.
The giving of this instruction may be unnecessary if adjustments are made to WPI 20.01 (Issues), and the jury is not instructed on the applicable statutes.
RCW 46.61.030.
The statute excuses what would otherwise be a violation of law and is strictly construed. Groves v. Meyers, 35 Wn.2d 403, 213 P.2d 483 (1950). Outside of the exempted statutory situations the usual rules of negligence apply:
[A] workman in the street has a special status which must be considered in determining whether he has exercised due care for his own safety. A worker is not required to exercise the same degree of care required of an ordinary pedestrian, but must exercise that care which an ordinarily prudent man, similarly employed in the street, would and could take to avoid injury by passing vehicles.
A worker is not required to keep a constant lookout for approaching vehicles, and the question whether such a worker has exercised reasonable care for his own safety in view of his occupation and surrounding circumstances is for the jury under the rule stated above.
James v. Edwards, 68 Wn.2d 194, 196–97, 412 P.2d 123 (1966) (citations omitted); accord Burns v. Dills 68 Wn.2d 377, 413 P.2d 370 (1966) (a surveyor working in an unmarked crosswalk was entitled to the statutory protection).
The statute does not apply to vehicles traveling to and from the designated construction site, but only within it. Derheim v. N. Fiorito Co., 80 Wn.2d 161, 492 P.2d 1030 (1972). A police officer on foot, controlling traffic on the highway, is a person engaged in work on the highway within the meaning of the statute and is not a pedestrian under RCW 46.61.240(1). Dailey v. Lange, 20 Wn.App. 12, 578 P.2d 1322 (1978); accord Sutton v. Shufelberger, 31 Wn.App. 579, 586, 643 P.2d 920 (1982) (motorcycle officer struck while stepping off his bike to stop a traffic offender).
On highways that are part of the federal interstate highway system, the secretary of transportation may adopt standards, rules, and regulations relating to construction and maintenance. RCW 47.52.027.
The statutory duty to warn by signs or flaggers may still exist even though the activity being conducted is covered by RCW 46.61.030. See RCW 47.36.200. Drivers engaged in construction repair or maintenance work are required to obey such signs and flaggers. RCW 47.36.200.
[Current as of March 2021.]
End of Document